- The Montreal Canadiens were not the only team devastated by the injury news about Andrei Markov. The star defenseman is expected to be out for 4 months, which could jeopardize his chances of playing for Team Russia in the Olympics, too. If he's a fast healer he could be back just in time for the Olympics. In which case he'd either be a) fresh and raring to go or b) rusty, especially for such a high level of competition. He is without a doubt Russia's best player on an average blueline, so expect him to be named to the team in December regardless.
- A couple of other big names are not 100% committed to the 2010 Olympic teams, either. Both Nicklas Lidstrom of Sweden and Jaromir Jagr of the Czech Republic are uncertain if they will be in Vancouver. I suspect both will be front and center come February.
- Eric Duhatschek gives us a closer look at Team Slovakia. He previously looked at Team Switzerland, Team Sweden and Team USA.
- Gary Bettman continues to cast doubts about the NHL's future participation in the Olympics beyond Vancouver 2010. It is a tough spot for the NHL, no one can deny that. If the 2010 Olympics were in Salzberg or Pyeongyang instead of Vancouver, the NHL would not be going there this time either.
- There were a couple of notable deaths in the International hockey community this past week. Vladimir Kostka, a coaching legend in the former Czechoslovakia, died at the age of 72. Ilse Robben, a noted female on ice official, died of cancer at the age of 39.
- The Royal Canadian Mint has immortalized Canada's 2002 gold medal win with a commorative edition 25 cent piece. 22 million quarters have been produced, 3 million of which are in painted in brilliant colors. In November the Mint will release a similar commemorative coin for the 2002 Women's gold medal victory.
October 03, 2009
Olympic Slap Shots
Here's a few notes about the upcoming Olympics: